Beginner Builder series 75% done! will probably never be finished. :(

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Great Resources

The internet is a vast and complicated place. One site simply can't provide all the info you need, and FreewareWire is no different. Here are some of the sites that I personally have found to be useful, or have been suggested to me by readers. (Click the images to go to the sites, btw.)

A+ Freeware is a site practically exactly like Freeware Guide, and since I've used Freeware Guide alot more, check its description. (I don't feel bad either, since I believe the same company owns both A+ and Freeware Guide.)

Freeware Guide is a simple little site that has programs that may not be as well known as entries on other sites. I like it mostly because most of the apps it has are fairly small, and some may be old, but still good. It's also good for hosting abandonware.

Freeware Mission is another freeware blog devoted to creating the ultimate "freeware only pc". It is really a great site, although the reviews are a bit short, in my opinion.

FreewareWiki is a great Wiki-style approach to Freeware. I do admit, it might be a tad hard to navigate, but the reviews are worth it. In addition to freeware, it also has alot of guides, but I haven't looked at those as much.

Gizmos (formerly known as Tech Support Alert) is a very useful, comprehensive site that provides insightful articles detailing each type of program. The useful thing about this site is that it has articles about the "Best Free Web Browser" instead of an article on Firefox or an article on Chrome. It's nice if you want to see a comparison of like freewares side by side.

Mohawk's Best of the Best is a list that is the author's opinion of the best freeware. Rather than argue about what's "best", I prefer to look at the site for ideas, since it doesn't have just one program per category. The site is a little dated, from what I can tell, but really, alot of the programs listed are still good.

PC Top Tips is a good resource for freeware of all types. It's a very odd site (it has ads about nuclear stuff....), but it's helped me find some golden apps. Just follow the links on the left. I especially enjoy "Tools and Utilities".

Portable Apps has quickly become a staple of the internet. The main center of the site is the Portable Apps suite/launcher which is essentially a collection of normal applications, made portable. The launcher is a start menu designed to run from your flash drive. In addition, Portable Apps hosts many versions of popular software, made portable. While it's collection is not the most extensive, the site creators are always updating current portablized software, and adding new.

Portable Freeware is the place to look for portable freeware. While Portable Apps does host it's own portable freeware, Portable Freeware helps by (a) discovering new portable applications, and (b) checking if an application is portable. If a program exists, odds are, it's been at least discussed in the Portable Freeware forums. In addition, Portable Freeware includes instructions on how to make it portable (ie, install then remove, unzip from ZIP, etc), and provides much detail to just how portable the program is (registry keys, for example.)

Tigsource is a very specific site, in that it is devoted to games. It is extremely vast, with hundreds of high-quality each category. It is very frequently updated, and provides insightful reviews to each game. It also has games divided up into genres, similar to here on FW. It's a really wonderful site. So wonderful, in fact, that I haven't even explored it entirely. But the slogan contains pie, so it's amazing.

Tiny Apps is a tiny little site that has tiny little freeware. I've always had a fetish for tiny freeware, so Tiny Apps is good for people like me. The site really is tiny, with a simple look (not that I can brag about FW...). It has 7 categories of freeware, about 50 in each. The nicest part about this site is that all the freeware is stuff that you've probably never heard of. Other than a few programs here and there that are common (Foxit reader, for example), Tiny Apps has a completely original lineup. And again, the size probably averages about 100k, which is great.

If you want to suggest a site, e-mail it to, do not post it in the comments. I don't want to sort through a mess of comments. Instead I want to sort through a mess of e-mails.

Only submit sites that you personally use. I cannot tell you how much I despise people who just say "Hey, here's" when I ask for a specific program. "Where can I get a macroer?" "What is a good word processor?" It sickens me, and if I get something that I can tell is crap or I can tell that is just the default suggestion, I will probably block your e-mail. So word to the wise, no one suggest to me.

Don't suggest developers sites. Piriform is a great company, Mozilla is a great company, but they aren't resources, they are freeware. If you want to e-mail me about freeware, don't refer to them as a resource, say "I know of some new great freeware." Resources are sites that have freeware that is not developed by the site's creators. That last sentence is true like 90% of the time.


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